Page:Ten Tragedies of Seneca (1902).djvu/153

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
Lines 816—867]

she knows not how to dip the already weary steeds, nor how to immerge their manes foaming with sweat, in the refreshing sea. Sol himself about to set, unexpectedly finds Aurora installed in an unaccustomed quarter (his) and he commands the darkness to appear; Nox, not as yet, prepared to obey, no stars show themselves, nor does the sky afford a glimpse of anything approximating light, nor does Phœbe dissipate any of this awful gloom! Whatever can all this mean? Would that real night might show itself!—They tremble, and their minds are struck down with intense fear, lest every conceivable thing should be involved, and lapse shattered in one fatal ruin and that again, inexplicable chaos should overwhelm both the Gods, and mankind, and again render undistinguishable, the Earth, the Seas, and the fiery element, and nature hide the wandering planets, and the stars of the painted heavens.—Nor will the ruler of the stars, Sol, when he rises, directing the seasons with his eternal torches ever afford us again any clearly defined Summer and Winter! Nor will Phoebe, who reflects the light of Phœbus, ever remove the fears inspired by night (darkness) and following a shorter course from her curved tracks, will disregard the government of her brother, as she is traversing the oblique paths of the Zodiac, (that is, her revolution being shorter, she cannot keep a regular pace with the Sun, and the accumulated crowds of Gods [constellations] will merge into one gulf). This Zodiac, formed of constellations, which courses amongst the sacred stars divides the Zones in its oblique transit, varying the length of the years, detaching itself from the celestial group will witness the fate of the rest of the fallen stars. This Aries, who at the return of Spring, not as yet gives navigators the blessings of the genial Zephyrs to employ their sails—will fall precipitately into the waters, that ocean over which aforetime he transported the timid Helle! This Taurus, who supports the Hyades on his golden horns, will drag down with him the Gemini and Cancer with his curved claws. The Nemæan Leo, burnt up with the flammigerous heat will fall again from his celestial habitat. Virgo will fall upon the lands, she formerly left behind, disgusted with the wickedness of mankind—and the Libræ (the balance), those punctilious arrangers of day and night, will drag down with them the venomous Scorpion, and aged Chiron, who drives the winged arrows from his Thessalian bow, shall see that bow broken and his arrows dispersed. Cold Capricorn (who frightened the very Giants with his ugliness) shall tumble, bringing back his tedious winter, and whoever thou art, Aquarius, Deucalion, Cecrops, Hylas or Ganymede,